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Nation’s top disease doc praises Vermont virus efforts

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Nation's top disease doc praises Vermont virus efforts

Vermont’s Gov. Phil Scott, left, listens as Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, discusses Vermont’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic during a press conference Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2020, in Montpelier, Vt. (Jeb Wallace-Brodeur/The Times Argus via AP)

The nation’s top infectious disease expert on Tuesday called Vermont’s ongoing efforts to control the coronavirus a model for the nation.

Dr. Anthony Fauci said Vermont’s continued emphasis on wearing masks, avoiding crowds, keeping physical distance and other simple measures are things he has been trying for months to communicate across the country.

“Whether you are in Vermont or in New York City downtown those things work,” Fauci said during a video appearance at the regular virus briefing held by Gov. Phil Scott. "They work in states with small numbers, like in Vermont, and they work in states with big numbers like New York and Texas and California."

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Statistics show that Vermont continues to have the lowest rate of positive tests for the virus that causes COVID-19 in the country — 0.2% according to state officials — and the lowest number of cases per capita with a growth rate of the cases of about 1%.

As of Tuesday, Vermont had recorded a total of just over 1,700 virus cases and 58 related deaths. Since the beginning of the pandemic in March, Scott and his administration have emphasized the basics to prevent the spread of the virus. The state has also conducted rapid testing and contact tracing of potentially infected individuals.

Now, the state is continuing its gradual reopening. Last week public schools opened — some with in-person instruction, some […]

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